Japan Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022

Basic information about the territory

Japan Basic Information

Subchapters:

  • System of governance and political tendencies in the country
  • Foreign policy of the country
  • Population

The system of governance and political tendencies in the country

Japan is a constitutional monarchy headed by an emperor and with the oldest parliamentary system in East Asia. The history of the Japanese Legislative Assembly dates back to 1889, when the Meiji Emperor promulgated a new constitution that constituted the first Imperial Parliament. The modern parliament (Diet) consists of the lower House of Representatives with 465 seats and the upper House of Counselors with 248 seats. The current government is composed of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and a smaller coalition partner, the Kómeitó Party. The Prime Minister is Fumio Kishida (LDP), who led his party to a convincing victory in the autumn 2021 elections. Check equzhou to learn more about Japan political system.

Composition of the Japanese government (as of 5/29/2022):

Prime Minister Fumio KISHIDA (LDP)

Minister of Finance Šuniči SUZUKI (LDP)

Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications Jasuši KANEKO (LDP)

Justice Minister Yoshihisa FURUKAWA (LDP)

Minister of Foreign Affairs Yoshimasa HAYASHI (LDP)

Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Shinsuke SUEMATSU (LDP)

Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare Shigeyuki GOTO (LDP)

Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Genjiro KANEKO (LDP)

Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Koichi HAGIUDA (LDP)

Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Tesuo SAJTO (Kómeitó)

Environment Minister Tsuyoshi Yamaguchi (LDP)

Defense Minister Nobuo KISHI (LDP)

Minister for Reconstruction after Natural Disasters Kosaburo NIŠIME (LDP)

Minister for Administrative Reform and Information Technology Karen MAKIŠIMA (LDP)

Minister for Crisis Management and Building National Resilience Satoshi NINOJU (LDP)

Minister for Regional Revitalization Sejko NODA (LDP)

Minister for EXPO 2025 Kenji WAKAJIMA (LDP)

Minister for Economic Security, Science, Technology and Space Policy Takayuki KOBAYASHI (LDP)

Vaccination Minister and Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu MACUNO (LDP)

Foreign policy of the country

Japan supports the multilateral international system based on international law and is a member of the G7, G20, OECD, World Trade Organization (WTO) and other major international organizations. Japan’s closest partner is the United States of America, with which it also has a defense alliance, including American military bases on its own territory. In recent years, efforts to balance China’s growing power ambitions in the East Asian region can also be observed through closer cooperation with the ASEAN countries, within the so-called Quad (an informal grouping of Japan, the USA, India and Australia) and by deepening relations with European countries and the European Union. Long-term problematic relations remain with South Korea due to historical reminiscences reflected in unresolved territorial disputes. Check recipesinthebox for Japan defense and foreign policy.

Japan supports an open international trading system. In recent years, it has also advocated bilaterally for the abolition of trade barriers by negotiating free trade agreements. Japan thus ratified the Comprehensive Agreement on Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), where, after the withdrawal of the US from the original TPP, it became the head of the remaining group of signatories. Negotiated with the European Union the most significant and comprehensive free trade agreement to date for both parties, the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), which entered into force on 01.02.2019. In 2021, the Free Trade Agreement with the United Kingdom was ratified and the Agreement o Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) with 14 other Asian and Pacific states.

Population

Japan has a population of approximately 126,000,000. It is the eleventh most populous country in the world, although its population is steadily declining, and it has a high average age of the population: 48.4 years. Almost 30% of the population is aged 65 or over, with an average life expectancy of 85 years.

In addition to ethnic Japanese, whose share of the total population is 97.8%, the following minorities also live in the country:

  • 764 thousand Chinese people
  • 479 thousand Koreans
  • 331 thousand Vietnamese people
  • 271 thousand Filipinos
  • 202 thousand Brazilians
  • 89 thousand Nepalese
  • 61 thousand Taiwanese

The main religious trends in the country are Shintoism and Buddhism, to which the vast majority of the population subscribes. Although almost all Japanese participate in the rituals and celebrations of both directions, they do not see it as an active expression of faith. On the contrary, most Japanese consider themselves atheists. In addition, Shinto is not considered a religion in Japan, but rather a way of expressing respect for nature and maintaining a harmonious relationship with it. About 2% of the population profess Christianity.

The population density is 335 inhabitants per km2 and the population is concentrated in large urban agglomerations, mainly around Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya.